Council approves bid for dam repair

Drawdown necessary to fix Clintonville dam
By: 

Grace Kirchner, Leader Correspondent

The Clintonville Common Council on Tuesday approved the low bid of $426,785.82 from Michels Corp., of New Berlin, to repair the community’s dam.

The city has applied for a Department of Natural Resources grant that could provide up to $225,000 to help cover the cost of the repairs. The bid is for drawing down the water and then repairing the dam.

A $21,339 contingency was included if a change order were necessary during the project. Alderman Jim Supanich said the contingency is needed because it is not known what the actual condition of the dam is and there may be some unforeseen problems that happen during the dam repair.

“Until we draw the pond down and see the actual condition of the dam under the water, they’re not absolutely sure what they’re actually going to find,” Supanich said.

Public Works Director Kray Brown said the drawdown would actually be 50 percent, but it might look like a full drawdown upstream.

“It’s going to draw down to what it was original, just a stream coming through the area,” Brown said.

Supanich said the Pigeon Lake Association favors the drawdown in order to make repairs. He said the association hopes to get permits to dredge some of the pond area during the drawdown.

Alderwoman Maggie Tichauser wanted to know if there could be hydro power from the dam.

Supanich said such a study was done about 10 years ago and it was not feasible; however, he said he would not be opposed to doing such a study again.

The Pigeon Lake District says the lake is only three feet deep in places, the silt is high, and the oxygen levels are down and in a couple of years there may be no fish, according to Supanich.

The drawdown will likely take place in fall and go through the winter. The amphibian population would be killed off, but the district believes the lake will be healthier when the dredging is completed.